Category Archives: preparation

The rule of 55, salt and fat in pizza dough.

We continue with the discussion on ingredients of the mixture, is the time to dedicate to the other two compulsory ingredients: water and salt.

Pizza dough by hand
Pizza dough by hand

We will also discuss the use of fat, but in this case already enter into the field of the optional ingredients, su cui, for a change, usually vehemently opposed philosophies differ in their.

We start from the water, second only in order of quantity over flour, but equivalent to it in terms of importance; is in fact the meeting between water and flour to make possible the formation of a dough.

What and how to use it is another important element to understand to prepare pizza at home. The first tip is to use natural mineral water because it is more convenient than tap water for three reasons::

  1. Tap water contains chlorine, used as a disinfectant; this characteristic makes it an antiseptic enemy of yeast and therefore there is no need to put it inside our bodies. If you find yourself without bottled water, and you're forced to use the tap water, first you have to leave in a jug for at least an hour in order to allow time for the chlorine to evaporate.
  2. In some areas, tap water can be overly harsh and in this case the only way to get more fresh water is to take it to the supermarket (Sant'Anna, Even the slightest, Sanbenedetto, Santacroce, etc.);
  3. It 'easier to manage the temperature, putting it in the refrigerator or less depending on season and room temperature.

This last point is important because the temperature of the water is the only element that can vary to control the final temperature of the mixture. Between summer and winter we may have differences in temperature (understood as the temperature of the room where we make our dough) also 10 degrees and this must be taken into account.

The dough for our pizza should have a temperature of about 24 degrees. Considering that produce heat during kneading, if the ambient temperature is 30 ° we have a little problem. The only way to intervene is the temperature of the water that in fact we have to put in the refrigerator during the hot season.

A good rule of thumb is the so-called rule 55: the sum of the ambient temperature, the temperature of the flour (consider that conventionally equals the ambient temperature) and water temperature must give us the value 55.

Let's take an example: if our temperature is 20 °, then the water will be more or less than 15 ° (20 + 20 + 15 = 55); but if we have 25 degrees as ambient temperature, then the water will be around 5 °.

Let the salt and even here it is necessary to keep in mind a couple of little things on how to use it properly.

Salt pizza dough

Salt is an inhibitor of yeast in the dough, it must be put as late as possible (instead you put the yeast dissolved in water immediately). salt has a positive effect on the formation of the gluten, therefore helps in closing the final dough.

The use of fat in the dough for the pizza is widespread, but it is not absolutely essential, in particular at home. One of the functions of the fat in the dough is to delay the staling, little fearful danger when the pizza is torn by 15 minutes maximum by cooking.

oil and butter in the dough for pizza

There remains the question of personal taste and their propensity intake of fat, in every way, If you decide to use them, know that it should be placed slurry already closed and very gradually.

The most common type of fat is definitely extra virgin olive oil, but lard is a plausible option.

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Yeast or brewer's yeast for pizza dough?

Yeast or brewer's yeast for pizza dough
Brewer's yeast

Yeast or brewer's yeast for pizza dough. The task of the yeast in the dough, and to increase the volume; for proving it means just that.

The increase in the volume of a dough is substantially due to the introduction of gas inside, This can happen in different ways.

If we prepare a sponge introduce air into when we incorporate the egg whites, while if we prepare cookies generally exploit a chemical reaction using a leavening agent (sodium bicarbonate or ammonium) che produce anidride carbonica.

Yeast or brewer's yeast for pizza dough

For bread and pizza, instead, using a leavening of biological. The production of carbon dioxide takes place by effect of the metabolism of the particular micro-organisms; there are two types of yeasts biological: the brewer's yeast and the so-called sourdough or natural.

The name is a bit 'confusing as any natural yeast is (in the sense that all exist in nature), but the name of "natural" means that around this type of yeast often develops an aura of "myth". So, the yeast is considered, no particular reasons, a more "organic".

The main difference between the yeast and the yeast is in the fact that while the first is composed of a single type of micro-organism, the second is a colony of many types of micro-organisms, many of which have complementary effects to those responsible for the rising and this means that a product made with natural yeast aromas and flavors develop richer, while improving the keeping quality and digestibility.

So better to use natural yeast for pizza? I would say no and I'll explain why.

  1. First, the natural yeast is much more complex to manage at home. Its creation and its proper maintenance require constant attention (is a bit 'like having a pet at home, maybe you do not need to take it out to make the needs, but he also wants to eat well and sometimes you have to give him a bath).
  2. The second downside is the lack of natural yeast consistent performance, particularly if it is not used very often (as is the case for example in a pizzeria).
  3. The third consideration is that the pizza is eaten freshly baked, and then the benefits on the shelf in this case we lose.

Brewer's yeast is rather simple to use and takes only a few rules to keep attention properly. The results are much more regular; if you really are a fan of sourdough, I recommend you not use it in place of yeast but in addition; in this way you can use the motor leavening of yeast and at the same time have the benefit organoleptic of the yeast.

Give birth to their own natural yeast is not complicated, but it requires a bit 'of time; if you are going to make the bread, worth having one on hand.

Let's go back to the yeast; the most common format is the dough from 25 grams of fresh yeast; You can also buy the yeast in dry form, but personally I do not recommend. When you buy the yeast, make sure that the expiry date is as far as possible and then hurry up and put it back in the refrigerator at 4 °.

You'll find that a loaf from 25 grams is an enormity of yeast, we'll be using very little; Once opened, however, the dough does not keep it more than a week wrapped in plastic wrap, then throw it well; seems like a waste if you always think that it costs about 25 cents, better to have it forever young and strong, a half-dead yeast will have a final result unsatisfactory.

The fresh yeast should be uniform beige color, if you notice parts with colorings "strange" try to eliminate them and look for a non-contaminated; generally the central part is less exposed to contaminants, and is therefore to be preferred.

Yeast or brewer's yeast for pizza dough

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Rules and doses to make pizza dough at home

Rules and doses to make pizza dough at home

Rules and doses to make pizza dough at home

Knead at home with their own hands, the best solution, the most simple and efficient. Knead by hand allows us to "feel" the dough as it is being formed.

Rules and doses to make pizza dough at home
Pizza dough by hand
Rules and doses to make pizza dough at home

Those who do not like too dirty hands, may use a planetary mixer, purchased at any electrical shop. Is less suitable for the bread machine though with small hydration doughs and not pushed too (60%) can be used.

When you knead, you have to follow a few simple rules.

  1. We start from the water, dissolving into the yeast Beer.
  2. Add the sifted flour; Sift the flour prevents the formation of clots but above all gives a good oxygenation of the
  3. Salt should be added just before the closing of the dough.
  4. It stops when kneading the dough forms a compact mass and shine, if you're mixing with a mixer, detaches completely from the bowl.
  5. If you use any fat, these are inserted only when the dough is already closed, slow, making them well absorb.
  6. Close a mixture is more or less simple depending on the flour used and the amount of water used; more flour is a strong, the easier it is to enter the amount of water more. The round Neapolitan-style pizza using flour of medium strength with hydration rather low, around 60%.
  7. In any case it is important not knead excessively because in this way is likely to unduly heat the dough or even ruin; In fact, beyond a certain threshold, the gluten will break down and the mixture is no longer usable.
  8. If you are having difficulty in closing the dough, rather than continue to knead it is better to stop the mixer to 5 the 10 minutes, flip the dough and continue to knead; the operation can be repeated several times if necessary.

To calculate the ingredients, we start with the number of pizzas we want to accomplish and weight; if we want to do 4 pats from 250 grams for each 4 people we need 1kg of dough, then we will need to 1000 / 1,60 = 625 grams of flour, the rest is calculated in proportion:

    1. Flour of medium strength (W240) 625 grams
    2. Water (60% flour) 375 grams
    3. Sale (2,5% flour) 15 grams
    4. Yeast (0,2% flour) 1,2 grams
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